Archive for Playing the Human Game

My life seems to work better when I think of it as a game, the Human Game of being. I have also discovered that my clients’ legal problems tend to get resolved more easily, with better results and less stress when they agree to play the Human Game with me. Here is how we play.

I start out by asking them a question:

Do you believe that you can change the past?

Then I sit back and wait for a response. So far, 100% of my clients have answered this question with some variation of “No. I don’t believe that I can change the past.” That’s when I ask them if they would like to play the Human Game with me. The game has three basic rules:

Rule Number One: Choose to believe that the past is perfect.

There are lots of sayings that extol the wisdom of not being upset about the past, like “there’s no sense in crying over spilt milk,” or “that’s water over the dam,” or “that’s water under the bridge.” What I am talking about in this game is more than that. In order for the game to be successful, the players need to choose to believe that the past is not only not worth getting upset about; they need to believe that it’s actually perfect. Here’s why. If the player believes that the past is anything less than perfect, the player will spend the player’s energy ruminating over “should have” or “could have” scenarios, detracting from the purpose of the game, which is to transform the player’s legal problems into opportunities for personal growth and positive change.

For those players who question the wisdom of such a rule, I go on to explain that if they chose to believe that the past were not perfect they would then want to change the past so that it would be perfect. Since they have already acknowledged that they cannot do that, then their wanting to make the past perfect would be wanting to do something that they know they cannot do, and that would just make them frustrated, angry and resentful and produce a decidedly less than perfect result. In other words, it would be crazy making. It just doesn’t make sense to go down that path. It doesn’t work!

Rule Number Two: Choose to believe that everyone does the best they possibly can, given the resources they think are available to them.

If the past is perfect and everyone who acted in the past did the best that he or she possibly could in the past, then the player does not have a reason for regrets, for anger, for guilt, or for resentment. The player has no reason to cling to any need to make other people wrong for what they did or did not do. I encourage my clients to think of the energy that they will save as players in this game by simply giving up the need to think, feel, and do all those things. Because if the past is perfect and every one has done the best they possibly could, then the player is free to believe in the perfection of everything that everyone has ever done, and no matter how much of a mess the current situation is, blaming someone else for that situation just doesn’t make sense because that someone the player is blaming did the best that they possibly could given the resources that they thought were available to them. Why would you want to blame someone who did the best they possibly could?

Rule Number Three: Choose to believe that you are 100% responsible for your current situation, no matter what it is.

If each player is 100% responsible for the situation in which the player finds himself or herself, then the player has the maximum amount of power possible to transform that situation into a better one. They are not going to wait passively for someone else to fix their life for them. With responsibility and resources comes power, the power to create and the power to destroy, the power to choose between constructive action and destructive action.

Playing the Human Game with these three rules allows a player to see that every event in the player’s past, every choice that the player made, every action that the player took was perfect simply because the event took place, the choice was made, and the action was taken and because everyone who participated in the process was doing the best that he or she possibly could, given the resources that they thought were available to them at the time.

I choose to believe that we all have limitless resources. We just don’t see them all the time. Now, in the current moment, the player may see resources that the player did not see in the past, and because of the player’s new awareness of resources, the player is able to choose to create new and different events, to make different choices, and to take different action.

Because the client/player has chosen to play the Human Game, the player does not waste precious energy blaming, shaming, and justifying. The playing field is always fresh, always new, constantly updated with information from the past, but never encumbered with negative emotions from the past. The player’s energy is focused on the present moment, creating a new future unencumbered by mistakes that might have been made in the past. The client/player gets to play a truly powerful game as a full partner with his or her lawyer/coach. This is a really powerful way to address legal problems and to play the Human Game. Try it!

Posted on December 3rd, 2007 at 4:43 pm. Filed in Personal, Resources